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Carbon Monoxide: The Silent Killer

Stay Informed With These Facts on Carbon Monoxide Poisoning


According to a recent study done by the CDC, the months of December, January, and February are the deadliest months for carbon monoxide poisoning. Carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning kills hundreds of Americans each year. Additionally, thousands more become ill from its effects. Follow these helpful tips so you can keep yourself, your family, and your pets safe.


First of all, what is carbon monoxide (CO)?

CO is an invisible, toxic, and flammable gas that cannot be noticed by humans or pets. It is the result of incomplete combustion primarily from fossil fuel burning sources.


What sources does CO come from?

Common sources are:

1. Furnace

2. Water Heater

3. Dryer

4. BBQ

5. Stove

6. Car

7. Fuel Fireplace

8. Blocked Vents or Chimney

9. Fuel Generator



Is CO poisoning noticeable immediately?

Unfortunately, no. CO is a poisonous, colorless, tasteless, and odorless gas. Because of this, CO poisoning is referred to as the “Silent Killer”.


How does CO poisoning affect someone?

Symptoms can often be described as flu-like. There are two kinds of CO poisoning:

  • Acute Poisoning: One-time high-level accidental poisoning. The symptoms include headaches, nausea, malaise, and fatigue.
  • Chronic Poisoning: Multiple-low-level poisonings over a long period of time. The symptoms include headaches, lightheadedness, depression, confusion, memory loss, nausea and vomiting.

If you detect any of these symptoms, seek medical attention urgently.


Is everyone affected the same way?

No. Individuals who are elderly, very young, or those with medical problems may be affected more seriously.


How can CO poisoning be prevented?

Have your heating equipment and exhausts checked, cleaned, and inspected once a year. This is especially relevant during the winter months. Additionally, make sure your gas appliances are vented properly. Also, never use a gas range or generator indoors to heat your home.  You can get CO detectors, alarms, and monitors to detect the presence of CO. If the detector sounds, leave your home immediately and dial 9-1-1.


We offer monitored CO detectors that can be integrated seamlessly into your home or business security system. For more information, please give us a call at (716) 632-4600 or click here.


For more information on CO poisoning, please visit the CDC website by clicking here.